Thursday, 31 August 2017

I'm Back

Sorry that it has been a while since I posted on here. Well, about six months to be truthful, but it has been a busy time for me. The upkeep of this blog has had to take a back seat for the last few months due to, well, basically lack of time. It has been the same situation with my website, that I have even been thinking about giving that up as it must be getting on to two years behind. So this is a decision I will have to make before the hosting is up for renewal next year.

Now let me bring you up to date with the events that have happened over the last five months. Well, the club I had joined when we moved up here, called it a day in February due to there only being three/four members attending meetings. Meanwhile, I had been in contact with a fellow model builder nearby and we got onto the conversation about clubs. Over the next couple of weeks, myself, Mark and Alastair set up a new club called SESKU & Hemsworth Scale Model Club. We decided to hold the meetings on two Saturday mornings a month in all places, a public library. This has been one of the main things taking up my time, but the progress of the clubs development and growth has been rewarding. Since that first meeting back at the beginning of February, the club has grown to at present, 32 members including 3 juniors. You can see some of the clubs activities on its Facebook group.

SESKU & Hemsworth Scale Model Club Facebook Group

So, lets get onto the modelling side of things. 

E.E.Lightning F.6

I will start with the Lightning as that was the last "WIP" back in March. I am glad to say, she is finished. After a long time spent on it, adding all of the aftermarket resin sets, it has produced a beautiful finished model. Now all that is needed to do is finish writing up the magazine article on the model and take the photographs to go with it. Another thing that I need to set some time aside for. But here are some photos of the finished Lightning to see how these aftermarket set can change a model.

McLaren F1 

This is another "WIP" project from last year, put on-hold for not being able to decide on what colour to paint it. Well, I had finally decided to take the plunge and paint it with Alclad 2's Indigo Blue Candy. This was going okay until I noticed some ejector pin marks appearing through the paint on the doors, plus some marks on the front boot lid. So after stripping these parts, re-prime, base silver and then re-apply the candy. But I could not get the shade to match the bodyshell. So I could either strip everything and repaint from scratch, or go with a completely different colour. So I chose this path and went with Tamiya's Racing Green out of the rattlecan. It's not a perfect finish, but it had got to the stage of either finishing it then and there, or giving the model a permanent position on the "Shelf Of Doom"!  


This is one of the 1/24th female figures from Master Box that I have acquired over the last year and the first one to be built. Alice is from the 1940's Pin-up range, available in both 1/24th and 1/35th scales. The others are from the 1950's and current day, with some new ones being released covering the 1980's/90's. Now I am still not an expert in figure painting, still have a lot to learn about this. It is getting the skin tones right, with the highlights and shading. I think I will have to get my mate Blas up for a weekend to give me a lesson on this. well, here she is, in all of her glory.

Spitfire Mk.Vb "Scramble"

A quick project, originally started by my grandson's friend who lost interest in it after a hour. So after having it sit on the shelf for a year, I decided to finish it off myself. This is an old Airfix kit from 1970's, raised panel line, etc. So I thought it was not really worth doing a fancy job on this one. My plan was to mount it on a base, just after taking off from a scramble. I made a few little cuts to allow me to re-position all of the control surfaces, then alter the undercarriage to have them in the retracting motion. The model when finished was mounted on a length of acrylic rod on a MDF base.

Well, that is the finished models so far this year, as well as the 1/48th scale Spitfire I did at the beginning of the year. So what is on the cards now? I am going to try and clear a couple more of the part build projects on the shelf of doom. One is the 1/48th scale F-14A Tomcat, that one where the decals started to break up on me. After a long time thinking about it, I decided to give the kit decals another go. The remaining ones on the sheet were given a couple of coats of Liquid decal film and the tails were then stripped, re-painted along with the red sections masked and airbrushed onto them. So far, it has worked without any problems, except for just one decal that decided not to follow the rules. I am not going to rush with the Tomcat and will keep going back to do it bit by bit.

Other projects on the go is the 1/16th scale Ferrari F40 Blackstar, which after a reaction between the clear and basecoat, it was put back in the box for another day. Well, I have finally stripped the paint from the bodyshell and other body parts. This took some time as it all had to be done using car brake fluid. Nothing else would touch the paint. The body just needs to have a couple of repair jobs done on it and then we start the painting process again. This time I am going to use the trusty Tamiya rattle can to paint her. Also on the conveyor belt called my workbench, is a P-51C Mustang from Academy, a Gloster Meteor T.7, part of my RAF 229OCU project and whatever else I decide to resurrect from the shelf of doom.

That is basically how things are at the present time in the mad world of plastic that surrounds me. Soon I am going to have to make a decision on what major project to start. This would be one that I will be building to enter into competitions at shows that I visit through the year. There are several on the shortlist, including the 1/24th scale Mosquito and Typhoon kits, the Zoukie Mura P-51D Mustang, or one of the other kits that I keep thinking about starting. It is a hard hobby to be in at times, the trials and tribulations that we have to endure in the name of relaxation!

So, now that things are hopefully starting to settle down on the club side and my wife does not find me too many jobs to do around the house (that was another source of time diversion), I can start to get back to some serious time at my workbench and get some more models built. This year has been a slow one so far and I need to get back on track.

If any of you happen to visit any models shows here in the UK and at one I am at, try to track me down and say hello. I will be at the East Riding Of Yorkshire Model Show this weekend at Driffield with the club stand. Also the IPMS(UK) Nationals at Telford in November on the Milton Keynes SMC stand. I am also planning to be at the Southwell Show near Newark in October, hopefully with the club stand to. So if you happen to be at one of these shows, pop along and say hello.

Also feel free to leave some comments on here to.

Monday, 6 March 2017

E.E. Lightning F.6 1/48th Scale With Extras WIP #2

Now for a big catch up on the Lightning project. 

Except for when I was working on the Spitfire for the last month, my main attention has been on the Lightning F.6. But a bit of time was also spent on the McLaren F1 to, that will be covered in a seperate post. Adding all of this extra resin detailing parts, does extend the build time of a project, especially when the manufacturer does not supply instructions on how to adapt the model to accept the aftermarket parts. It is all trial and error!

In the last post on this project, I had brought you up to the point of number 2 engine bay cut out and fitted. The next stage was to fit the electronics bays onto the fuselage. The first one was along the spine just in front of number 2 engine. Once the door sections were cut away from the fuselage halves and cleaned up to accept the resin door, the process of fitting the panel with various components on needed its mounting to be worked out.The easiest method was to use some lengths of angled plastistruct as brackets for the panel to sit on. After some sanding, the panel was able to sit in between the fuselage sides low enough down and flush.

Included in the electronics set, was two compartments to fit along the side of the fuselage. First I had to identify the access panels on the fuselage, as the sets instructions did not match up to the fuselage. But using books and photographs online,  I had managed to match up the correct access panels on the model and started to cut them out. The resin compartment boxes were then glued in position inside the fuselage and any gaps filled in.

 The next stage to tackle was the control surfaces. The wings had replacement parts for both flaps and ailerons, of which the flap was a straight swap for the kit part. The ailerons were moulded into the wing upper surfaces, thus needed to be cut out of this part to accept the resin replacement. When checking the resin aileron up to the wing, I notice a difference in size between the resin aileron and the moulded one on the wing. The resin part was slightly shorter than the one on the kit, so the new aileron was marked out on the wing, cut out and original panel lines filled and sanded. The gap now exposed to the rear of the opening was filled with a strip of plasticard to strengthen the joint between the upper and lower halves of the wings.

The same problem was found with the flaps, being slightly shorter than the kit flaps. But this was easier to rectify by adding a thin strip of plasticard to the outer end of the flap opening on the wing.  

Before assembling the wing halves together, the resin undercarriage bay had to be fitted inside each wing. The only problem here is that the bays are more than 4mm thickand the deepest space between the two wing surfaces inside was 3.5mm. So before removing the moulded parts of the bays from the kit parts, I measured their depths, noted how they curved and which way the curve went. I first cleaned up one wing allowing me to use the other as a reference, then started to file and sand the resin bay to shape. After several test fittings and adjustments, I was happy with how the bay sat inside the wing. I repeated the process for the other wing then once this was finished and I rechecked both bays, they were glued into their positions on the inside of the lower wing surfaces. Below is one of the resin bays before I glued it into the wing. 

Now that the bays were fitted, I assembled the two wing halves together and fitted the flaps and ailerons to each wing in the positions I wanted to set them to on the model. The resin undercarriage bays are a vast improvement in detail compared to the moulded kit bays.

Now that the wings were finished, I moved onto the tail and replacing the rudder on it. This was a straight forward where the moulded rudder was cut away and the edges cleaned up ready to accept the resin rudder. Again I posed the rudder at a slight angle to give it some life, just as if the ground crew was checking the aircraft's control surfaces. I think I might need to get some ground crew figures to go with this model now!

I will finish this post up with the intake section. In the selection of resin part sets, I received a replacement radar unit and front undercarriage bay. This is a two piece set consisting of the bay and radar as one piece, then the shock cone as a separate piece. First the moulded undercarriage bay had to be removed from the intake halves before joining them together. Once this had dried, I could then start filing the opening to accept the replacement part. After some test fits and adjustments, the bay and radar unit fitted correctly inside the intake without the need to use any plasticard to fill gaps. Before I painted the intake and resin part prior to assembly, I drill out some of the waste resin from inside the radar unit and shock cone in case I had to add some weight into them further down the line. After painting, the radar/bay part was glued in position inside the intake.

That is this installment for now and I with continue with more postings of this project very soon. Any comments or questions are appreciated.